Degassing Drilling as an Effective Way to Unload Carbonate Reservoirs of the Host Rock Mass of Primary Diamond Deposits


The issues are considered related to gas manifestations during the development of primary diamond deposits in Yakutia — «Internatsionalnaya» and «Udachnaya» pipes, which are the most difficult in terms of gas-dynamic conditions. Gas manifestations at the field are associated to a greater extent with gases dissolved in the natural brines, and to a lesser extent — with free and sorbed gases. Due to the fact that when developing the underground mines, the sources of explosive gases were recorded, to ensure the safe conduct of mining operations it is required to unload the rock mass. Analysis of data obtained at the different stages of construction and operation of the fields identified the source of the recorded gas manifestations: reservoirs and local gas reservoirs filled with gas-saturated brines. It was revealed that the sources of gas release are zones consisting of cavernous and fractured carbonate rocks complicated by fracturess and low-amplitude tectonics. The analysis of the dynamics of changes in the gas-dynamic, hydrogeological and mining-geological conditions of mines allowed to propose a two-stage advanced degassing of the host rocks as a rather effective method of combating gas manifestations. At the first stage, vertical advance wells are drilled for the entire capacity of the production block. At the second stage, 3–7 horizontal and slightly inclined (up to 10°) wells are drilled in front of the borehole of the underground working under construction. Thus, there is an interval unloading of the massif and the involvement of undeveloped natural gas reserves at the first stage. Actual observations of gas inflows in the underground mine workings showed a significant drop in gas production rates. In such a way, at the «Internatsionalnaya» mine the average gas flow rate per well (per year) decreased from 12.67 to 1.06 m3/h, which confirms the success of the selected two-stage degassing.

1. Radchenko S.A., Matvienko N.G. Methods for Rapid Assessment of the Intensity of Methane Release from Coal and Rocks in the Faces to Improve Safety. Bezopasnost truda v promyshlennosti = Occupational Safety in Industry. 2014. № 4. pp. 34–39. (In Russ.).
2. Kurszlaukis S., Mahotkin I., Rotman A.Y., Kolesnikov G.V., Makovchukc I.V. Syn- and post-eruptive volcanic processes in the Yubileinaya kimberlite pipe, Yakutia, Russia, and implications for the emplacement of South African-style kimberlite pipes. Lithos. 2009. Vol. 112. Supplement 1. pp. 579–591. (In Russ.). DOI: 10.1016/j.lithos.2009.05.016
3. Gernon T.M., Sparks R.S.J., Field M. Degassing structures in volcaniclastic kimberlite: Examples from southern African kimberlite pipes. Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research. 2008. Vol. 174. Iss. 1–3. pp. 186–194.
4. Dongre A., Tappe S. Kimberlite and carbonatite dykes within the Premier diatreme root (Cullinan Diamond Mine, South Africa): New insights to mineralogical-genetic classifications and magma CO2 degassing. Lithos. 2019. Vol. 338–339. pp. 155–173. DOI: 10.1016/j.lithos.2019.04.020
5. Drozdov A., Kalganov V., Akishev A. Mining and geological features of the diamond deposits in Yakutia. LAP Lambert Academic Publishing, 2015. 576 p. (In Russ.).
6. Drozdov A.V., Iost N.A., Lobanov V.V. Cryohydrogeology of the diamond deposits in Western Yakutia. Irkutsk: Izd-vo IGTU, 2008. 507 p. (In Russ.).
7. Giniyatulin I.M., Blazhkun D.V., Ivashina E.I., Korobkov G.V. Materials for the legend of the Botuobinskaya series of sheets of the geological maps at a scale of 1:50 000. Mirny, 1989. 70 p. (In Russ.).
8. Iost N.A., Yannikov A.M. Hydrogeological characteristic of the deposits of tolbachanskaya suite in the near-pipe space of the «Internatsionalnaya» pipe. Molodezh i nauchno-tekhnicheskiy progress v sovremennom mire: sb. dokl. VIII Vseros. nauch.-prakt. konf. studentov, aspirantov i molodykh uchenykh (Youth and the scientific and technological progress in the modern world: collection of reports of the Eighth All-Russian Scientific and Practical Conference of Students, Graduate Students and Young Scientists). Mirny: Izd-vo «Pero», 2017. pp. 201–205. (In Russ.).
9. Yannikov A.M., Golovanev A.O. Gas content of deposits of the tolbachanskaya suite in the near-pipe space of the «Internatsionalnaya» pipe. Estestvennye i tekhnicheskie nauki = Natural and technical sciences. 2018. № 10 (124). pp. 83–87. (In Russ.).
10. Yannikov A.M. The intensity and duration the movement of formation waters from marginal collectors tolbachinskii suite. Available at: (accessed: February 10, 2021). (In Russ.).
11. Zueva I.N, Utkina N.A., Bodunov E.I. Chemical structure of naphthides in Daldyn-Alakitsky region (according to IR and UV spectroscopy data). Geology, hydrogeology and geochemistry of oil and gas of the southern slope of the Anabarskaya anteclise. Yakutsk: Izd-vo YaF SO AN SSSR, 1986. pp. 99–110. (In Russ.).
12. Hydrogeology of the USSR: Yakutskaya ASSR. In 46 v. V. 20. Moscow: Izd-vo «Nedra», 1970. 384 p. (In Russ.).
13. Alekseev S.V., Alekseeva L.P., Borisov V.N., Shouakar-Stash O., Frape S.K., Chabaux F., Kononov A.M. Isotopic composition (H, O, Cl, Sr) of the underground brines of the Siberian platform. Geologiya i geofizika = Geology and Geophysics. 2007. Vol. 48. № 3. pp. 291–304. (In Russ.).
14. Pinneker E.V. Brines of Angara-Lena artesian basin. Moscow: Nauka, 1966. 332 p. (In Russ.).
15. Kharchenko A.V. Influence of the physical, mechanical and rheological properties of a coal-rock mass on the gas content of a coal seam. Deformirovanie i razrushenie materialov s defektami i dinamicheskie yavleniya v gornykh porodakh i vyrabotkakh: materialy XXVII Mezhdunarodnoy nauchnoy shkoly im. akademika S.A. Khristianovicha (Deformation and destruction of the materials with defects and dynamic phenomena in the rocks and workings: materials of the Twenty-seventh International Scientific School named after academician S.A. Khristianovich). Simferopol, 2017. pp. 234–237. (In Russ.).
16. Majewska Z., Zietek J. Changes of acoustic emission and strain in hard coal during gas sorption-desorption cycles. International Journal of Coal Geology. 2007. Vol. 70. Iss. 4. pp. 305–312. DOI:10.1016/j.coal.2006.06.007
DOI: 10.24000/0409-2961-2021-6-88-94
Year: 2021
Issue num: June
Keywords : Malo-Botuobinsky diamond-bearing area Daldyno-Alakitsky diamond-bearing area carbonate reservoirs methane formation gases degassing drilling rock mass unloading
  • Yannikov A.M.
    Yannikov A.M.
    Cand. Sci. (Geol.-Mineral.), Laboratory Head Institute «Yakutniproalmaz», ALROSA, Mirny, Russia
  • Kharchenko A.V.
    Kharchenko A.V.
    Cand. Sci. (Eng.), Senior Research Assistant, Assoc. Prof., Institute of Comprehensive Exploitation of Mineral Resources Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow, Russia